Karina Miller Blog 21: My 14 days of quarantine prison in SINGAPORE05-04-2020
We are all in the same boat at the moment as we deal with these tempestuous times. Panic and uncertainty are all around us, and I had to decide what to do and to do it fast before there were no toilet rolls left. Lol
On a serious note for me, it was a last-minute decision to come to Singapore to be with my daughter.
Making this decision was not as easy as I had to leave my three boys behind.
"Go, mum, we are men, not little boys, we will be fine," they said.
Hmmm…. not so easy as they will always be my little boys.
Sat at the airport, I was sad my heart was heavy, as my motherly instincts were overwhelming me.
How could I leave my boys behind?
I am sidetracked for a second as I look around and start to feel uncomfortable and underdressed as I watch three Singaporeans get dressed into full-body Coronavirus, protective suits.
Mask, goggles, bodysuit gloves, Jesus I felt exposed and vulnerable with only my surgical mask.
I was washing my hands every ten minutes, being mindful not to touch anything.
"Don't touch your face," I keep repeating to myself as I steer my way through the minefield of people.
People getting too close, way too close, I had the urge to tell them to get back. I was engulfed in my own paranoia.
Where can I buy one of those suits, also crossed my mind for a second? Lol
Was I going to actually make it to Singapore alive? I had my doubts.
As I arrive in Singapore, I am fully aware that I will have to go into quarantine for two weeks as Singapore has just set new rules for anyone entering the country, in an effort to stop the spread of the virus.
As it was my intention to stay a couple of months in Singapore, as usual, I didn't have a return ticket. This was suddenly a problem, which it had never been before; hence a 2-hour endurance test ensued. One queue after another, one paper after another and finally I am released.
Phew... that was gruelling after a 13-hour flight.
During my wait, I saw 4 pilots trying to get in for 2 days, and they were turned away. Wow, Singapore takes all this very seriously, which could be one reason why the virus has not spread in the same way as everywhere else.
On the way to the hotel, I feel a sense of freedom which is about to be very short-lived.
I had decided to do my quarantine at a hotel as I did not want to risk infecting my daughter.
Arriving at the hotel, they take my temperature. As they did, everyone who entered. Immediately I think, wow this is how to do it.
I check-in and see that my daughter has left me 2 bags full of goodies. My Corona stocking. I go to my room and open the giftbags on the bed. I laugh as I pull one thing out after another.
Everything from chocolate to vitamins to Clarins Face Masks, body scrub and moisturiser. Bless her this was better than Xmas.
The room is luxurious and comfortable. I take a shower, unpack my things, and get organised. I have an uncharacteristically overwhelming feeling to do a live video on Facebook to have a little chat with everyone. Which I did in my bathrobe. Lol
Hahaha who knew I could do that, Lol not me, this was a newfound talent that I was about to embrace.
Totally jetlagged and with little to no sleep, I make myself get up and face the day.
I stick my gym gear on and go down for some breakfast only to find breakfast is no longer being served as it is 11.15 am. Hmm...ok, I wander around the hotel to see where the gym is.
Finding the gym, I decided to work out for 45 minutes even though my body clock is all over the place.
I can do this, I thought as I take a selfie in the gym for Facebook.
I will just come to the gym every day, this is going to be easy.
I am thinking about my boys and feel a desperate urge to get them out of the UK as I see things are getting worse daily. The next thing, their flights were booked, and they were on their way to Singapore.
I wake, shower and go down for some breakfast, this time catching it at 10.45 am just before they close.
After my breakfast, I go back to my room and look at my social media feed. It is amazing how this global crisis has affected us all in different ways. Looking at all the positive feed, people coming together, people singing people actually caring about their next-door neighbour, for the first time. Wow-what is happening?
I go to an empty gym before my session being mindful of cleaning all the equipment and sterilising my hands.
I think while I am running. What can I do to lift people's spirits a little?
I can have a room party, that's what I can do. I think to myself.
Coming back to the room, I announce to everyone that I will be going Live on Facebook and asked to join me for a chat and some fun, with a glass of wine or bubbles.
Well, it is Friday, I am thinking of everyone Marbella in quarantine. I love to send out positivity, so this seemed the natural thing to do.
I am pumped and feeling happy that at least I can do something, albeit a small gesture.
Bath, face pack, hair and makeup done, I am ready. I order a bottle of wine and a bucket of ice.
Just as I am about to go 'Live' there comes a knock at the door.
I open the door to an irate man and small Asian women, with a face like thunder.
"Are you Karina Miller?" They ask.
"Yes, I am."
"Are you supposed to be in quarantine?"
"Yes, I am in quarantine, I came from London," I reply innocently.
"Did you receive a paper from an officer at the airport to say you are in quarantine for 14 days?"
"Yes, I did."
"You have broken your quarantine."
"No, I have not."
"Yes you have been to the gym, you have not stayed in your room."
"Oh, no one told me when I checked in that I had to stay in my room."
"You have to change rooms now, right now, pack your things and we will be back in 15 minutes."
"What….what do you mean I am busy right now, I can change tomorrow."
"No, you will have your things packed in 15 minutes, or I will call an officer to deal with this."
"Ok... ok calm down," I say, shutting the door as it started to hit me what was actually happening. In one second, I had gone from being a hotel guest to a convict. I go 'Live' on Facebook for two mins and announce to everyone quickly that I will have to cancel.
I packed my bags so fast and surprised myself by finishing just before the 15 minutes were up.
They arrive unhappily, to escort me to another room allocated for the people in quarantine.
I unpack once again, drink my wine and just chill. Wow, this is now my new home for the next 12 days. "You can do this," I tell myself.
The twins arrive, thank god and are in quarantine around the corner. I almost feel calm and content, with only my eldest son left in Sweden starting his new job.
"I am a man he repeats, it's not a problem, I'm fine."
I was sure he had some gorgeous naked Swedish girl in his bed to comfort him. Lol, He would be fine.
9 am a knock at the door.
I open the door to see a man dressed in full surgical gear holding a thermometer to take my temperature. This was going to be happening every day twice a day he announces.
Ok well, I am here, this is where I have to stay so you better just chill I tell myself. 'Quarantine and chill.' I begin to delve into all the chocolate and goodies my daughter had left. Oh, no quarantine and chill were going to mean quarantine and fat.
As I am munching on my goodies, my daughter calls to tell me she has had a call from ICA. (Government officials.)
"You have broken your quarantine." They tell her.:(
As I had given my daughters phone number at the airport, they had thought she was me as she went about her day with them tracking her phone.
Oh dear, this was becoming a bit of a mess.
She calls to put things straight, but that is never easy in Singapore, it was going to take at least 3 calls before they get to grips with what was happening.
I am starting to realise that this is not going to be so easy without being able to work out or run. My body is used to running 10 to 15k a week. How was I going to do this?
I scan the room and look at my options.
"Ok, so you can't go outside, so you are just going to have to run in here," I tell myself.
I put my music on, set my timer and start to run up and down the room for 30 minutes. I gather sweat, and surprisingly I feel good. I feel even better when some weights and exercise bands arrive at my door. Courtesy of my daughter.
Yes, I told you she is a sweetie. I take a bath and go to bed, my time clock is back to normal.
I wake up at 9 am to get my temperature taken from a guy who thinks I have Coronavirus as it backs away and takes my temperature at arm's length. I am not feeling good. Physically I am ok, but mentally my mind is starting to play games with me. I am trapped in prison with no fresh air. Fuck….I can't go out of the room, and it is starting to get to me.
As I lay in the bath, in mid-afternoon. I feel claustrophobic and a little panicky at the thought of being stuck in here for so many more days.
A knock at the door. I jump out of the bath, wrap a towel around me and open it.
3 men standing outside, one was the same man from before and 2 officers with a paper for me to sign.
As I open the door, I am flustered as I stand there, half-naked.
"Are you Karina Miller?"
"Yes, I am."
"You have broken your quarantine."
"What are you talking about, I have been here all the time. I only went to the gym."
"Is your daughter here?"
"No, why?" I ask.
"Why would my daughter be here?"
"Please sign this paper." They say.
"What is it?"
"It's just to say you have broken your quarantine."
"But I haven't, I have been here all the time."
"Sign this, they insist."
As I am still flustered, I sign it before reading it." Never a good idea, I know.
I burst into tears as I feel bullied and a little like a convict as I hand the signed document back to them.
"I only went to the gym, no one told me when I arrived that I had to stay in the room." I cry like a baby with an ugly cry face.
They hand me a copy as I close the door in tears. I was losing the plot.
Thankfully some good friends call to give me some support. :) I feel better.
I'm halfway there. I am sure that the hotel has decided that I have the virus and will no longer give me metal knives and forks or wine glasses. It all had to be plastic. They were not cleaning my room and not knocking on my door when the food had arrived. Leaving it cold outside for me to guess when they had left it.
I was getting pissed off now, this was not acceptable. After all, I was still a paying customer at the Grand Park Orchard hotel.
I welcome all different experiences in my life, and this was definitely one I have never had before and won't forget in a hurry.
I got to thinking this must like to have had the Coronavirus or recovered from it. People treating you like you have the plague, discriminating and alienating. I mean, if I had the virus, shouldn't they have some compassion?
I randomly open the door to see if my food is outside to catch a cleaner cleaning going about her work. She takes one look at me and runs down the hallway.
Jesus, what is wrong with these people?
I wake to another 'Groundhog day.' But this time not with the guy who wanted to take my temperature every day. Were they finally perhaps coming to the conclusion that maybe I don't have the virus after all?
I had survived my first week and was heading for the home run.
Another 30-minute run I do my daily workout and take a video for Facebook of me working out in the bath. Well not actually in the bath as in the bath, but standing in the tub. Lol
Dancing and keeping myself entertained and positive. Filling my stories with positive feed.
I had spent a lot of time getting ruffled up in the bath. Facemasks, body scrubs, bubble baths and pampering. Pedicures and moisturising it was all going on.
Karina Miller Blog 21: My 14 days of quarantine prison in SINGAPORE
Wow, I'm almost there 5 days to go. I am consuming way more calories than I am burning. My body is crying out for a good 10k run.
Jesus, I need a hot fit quarantine partner to keep me fit and entertained. Lol
It's incredible what solitude can do. Personally, I have no problem with isolation as I like to be alone a lot.
Locked in a room for 14 days, is a different story altogether and quite challenging.
No fresh air and a real feeling of imprisonment, which is alien to me.
I am still never being told when my food is outside, no matter how many times I ask them to ring and tell me. So frustrating!! :(
I hate the hotel and the staff and want to kill them all at this stage. Lol
Karina Miller Blog 21: My 14 days of quarantine prison in SINGAPORE
I can see the light, I can feel the fresh air as I look out my window. The world is carrying on as usual on Orchard road, People milling along the street, getting on with their lives like there is no Coronavirus in Singapore. (The virus doesn't like the humidity or the 30/32 degrees heat, It doesn't thrive in these conditions which is another reason I feel safer here.
Although they are on their second Lockdown with no one coming in or out of the country. The people in Singapore are not homebound and are free to do what they want, but keeping social distance.
The virus has been here for two months, and they are used to living with it although in recent weeks it has spiked a little with Europe being infected.)
I am bored and decided to go through my new book again to see if I wanted to make any last changes. I laugh as I read it as I had forgotten some of the funny things I had written.
I do my work out, stuff my face and have another bath. I can now pinch half an inch by the way. :(
I started to write this blog to record my little Karina, Coronavirus disease (COVID-19), prison experience, in Singapore. This is entertaining me as I write and keeping myself occupied.
I take my 5 different vitamins daily as we all should be doing right now to boost the immune system, and I feel like a good girl.
My daughter has some yummy food delivered as she does every day. I have a hot bath and snuggle up in my large white bed and sink into the softest pillows white pillows ever. Which was my only consolation at this point?
I had not drawn the curtains properly, so the room wasn't dark enough for me to sleep.
I jump out of bed to go and draw the curtains. Now the room is pitch black.
Wow, that's better, I think myself as I fumble in the dark on the way back to my bed.
As I turn the corner find the bed. Wam….. I smack my head into the edge of the wall. Wow…. Jesus that hurt. I immediately rush to the bathroom to see the damage.
Oh my god, there is blood, my forehead was cut open and in one second had blown up like a balloon.
"Jesus, fuck are you kidding me?" I say out loud to myself as I nurse my wound.
I was shocked, wow…..., I hit that wall hard and I'm not sure how that even happened.
This was all I needed.
Unlucky for some, but not for me as I have 1 day left or this nightmare. I wake with my head hurting.
"Oh shit." that really happened last night. I say out loud.
I go into the bathroom to look in the mirror and check the damage. My forehead is still swollen, so I order some ice, to try and bring the swelling down. I look like a monster.
I send pictures to my daughter and the boys, to see their reaction.
"Jesus, mum, what are you doing?" They all said with genuine concern.
Hahaha, I had no idea how that had happened, but the cut wasn't too deep, I will survive.
I lay on the bed and 'quarantine and chill.'
I ordered some wine, why not?
I start to feel a rush of excitement at the thought of getting my freedom back.
Just being able to walk out of this door with no one looking at me like I am going to contaminate them, will be a novelty.
I have had a whole lot of time to think about life and the strange world we are living in, I will keep those thoughts to myself. :)
I had had solitude for two weeks and a big smack in the head. I had learned my lesson.
I would never be a naughty girl again. Lol
Yaey, it's my escape day!
I jump out of bed full of life in sheer delight at the thought of getting some fresh air.
Wow…..it certainly does make you appreciate just the air that we breathe when everything is taken away.
I grab my cases and start to pack. It takes me all of 20 minutes as I eagerly shove everything in.
I am due to check out at 12 pm, I'm excited it's 11 am, I couldn't be more ready to leave.
My phone rings, it's my daughter's husband.
"Oh I can't believe this, I hate to tell you this, but you have to stay until tomorrow morning." He tells me.
"What are you kidding me, I'm ready to leave."
"I know, but we have to obey the rules, or you could be in serious trouble."
My heart sank with disappointment for a second as I process the situation. I take a deep breath.
"Ok, what's another day in prison," I tell him.
Putting the phone down, I am genuinely gutted, and my spirits have sunk.
My phone rings again.
"I just talked to my friend in the ICA (government officials), and he says you can leave now."
"What are you kidding me," I say again, this time with a big smile on my face.
"Be ready in 30 minutes."
"Ok, ok, I'm ready now."
Straight away, I call down to ask for some help with my cases. Only to find that my drama isn't over yet.
"Sorry Maam, we can not come to get you bags."
"What…..What are you talking about?"
"We can not touch your bags." He tells me.
Oh, I just about lost the plot this time and almost end up having an argument with him, this is not what I needed. I had enough of being treated like a criminal with the plague.
We won't go into what I said but let's say, I made my point.
Ten minutes later, a man arrives at my door, dressed in full surgical gear from head to toe to take my bags.
Wow, was this really necessary?
I didn't care, I just wanted out.
He has to call down to activate the lift as no one can leave this quarantine floor.
As I finally walk outside, the heat hits me 32 degrees. Wow, I had forgotten how hot it was here. I love it.
My quarantine prison was over, it felt so good to breathe some fresh air.
This had to be one of the madest experiences in my life. I had been challenged in a way that I had never been before, and I had not coped as well as I had thought I would.
Being confined in a room for 14 days was definitely not one of the best situations I've been in, but it definitely made me think of all the things that we take for granted every day.
My heart goes out everyone to Marbella and everyone trapped in houses all around the world at the moment.
Let's pray that this nightmare ends soon.
You can follow me on Facebook and Instagram stories to see what's going on in Singapore if you are bored. :)
Love to all.
Who is Karina Miller?
Karina Miller is a blogger, writer, and author of the books ‘SINGLE IN MARBS’ and ‘MARBELLA GIRLS.’ based in Marbella, Spain. Both books are available right now on Amazon and will shortly be available in BOOKWORLD Puerto Banus, Marbella.
Get her book!
Follow Karina Miller here:
BE SEEN! BE VISIBLE! I-Marbella.com
Be part of Marbella’s present, past, and future!
Leave your stamp on Marbella’s fascinating and spectacular history!
i-Marbella.com – Recording highlights of the chronology of events, people and places in Marbella, Costa del Sol, and Spain
By: Karina Miller
Buy the entire gallery
Málaga Christmas lights are on! @ Malaga November 24th 2017
Marbella CIT XVIII Business Awards November 24 of 2017 at Puente Romano Beach Resort & Spa
Please enter an email!
Please enter your password